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Thread: The Butterfly Effect: A British AAR

  1. #2221
    "Look behind you Mr Caesar !" Atlantic Friend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by C&D View Post
    Hot damn! French aircraft porn. Is there any other thing that goes together better?
    Pipmeister Royal Navy porn probably.

  2. #2222
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    Pip

    I think you have 1930/40's Aussie pollies well worked out. Dreamers and fools the lot of them... except Curtin!

    As for our airways, they're the one idea we had that didn't turn out to be a total pipe dream. It's called QANTAS mate and it turned out ok... until we privatised it.

    Love the Dominion lead in, can't wait to see the RAAF goodies...

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  3. #2223
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  4. #2224
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duritz View Post
    Pip

    I think you have 1930/40's Aussie pollies well worked out. Dreamers and fools the lot of them... except Curtin!

    As for our airways, they're the one idea we had that didn't turn out to be a total pipe dream. It's called QANTAS mate and it turned out ok... until we privatised it.

    Love the Dominion lead in, can't wait to see the RAAF goodies...

    Dury.
    Neither can I!!!!!!!!!! Lets hope Britain lets the Aussies set up a Merlin production line

  5. #2225
    Field Marshal Vann the Red's Avatar
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    Fascinating update, Pippy. Where does our tour take us next?

    Vann
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  6. #2226
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delay, I was leaving for holiday and last minute panics took longer than expected. Anyway;

    Karelian - Maybe, though if the British can produce a competent enough design Canada may ignore the M3 and use that instead. With Britain now having some actual combat experience and a budget producing something competent is not out of the question.

    Bafflegab - If your sure the money will be there you can afford to wait, however that's a very rare event seldom seen in the world.

    Canadian Spits are not out of the question, though it depends on what role the RCAF see itself playing. There is no real 'Home Defence' need so would an expeditionary air force be fighters or bombers?

    truth is life - Japan's problem is going to be they just don't take Britain seriously. If Britain appeared at all in Japanese planing it was in the form of 'When Britain surrenders that will destroy American morale', that sort of thing.

    Just as Britain assumed the Far East could hold out until reinforcements made it, Japan assumed they could finish their conquests before the RN had even reached the Indian Ocean.

    Of course sinking the Italian fleet and reinforcing the Eastern Fleet will force a re-appraisal, but the IJN will always view the US as the main threat with Britain a speed bump at best. That may be an unwise view.

    DonnieBaseball - I completely agree, in normal circumstances you spend it when it's offered as per the Royal Navy earlier. However it's a bit different for Canada - the economy is picking up (more on that later) and King knows the most likely government scandal is "PM lies about defence spending increase, misleads public and Parliament." so I think the money is relatively safe, for the moment.

    That said I don't think anyone is going to hang around too long, just till the new year when the Conferences are over and the Army review is produced, still safely before the budget which will be the deadline.

    The army will fill out it's ranks but no talk of overseas service, not yet anyway, while tracks, tanks and trucks of all types will be given a good looking over.

    Licence production of anything? Ohh Britain wont like that, she'll agree if she has to but wont be happy, Dominions should buy British and be happy. At this stage the Air Staff still thinks a few hundred is volume production, a really mass produced design (all types of Hawker Hart say) may just hit a thousand. The idea of building several thousand of anything is just madness for the RAF of the 1930s, tell them they'll buy 20,000 Spits or even 14,000 Hurricanes and they'd have laughed at you.

    truth is life - Australia knows they can't get a RAN big enough to even be a speed bump for the IJN, the RAAF is the only service that can make a difference. That's not to say the RAN will be ignored, but the current focus is the air.

    C&D - Fokkers? Ummm, in the skies over Spain maybe?

    Atlantic Friend - Some fine aircraft there, though I confess to an irrational dislike of the 'three engines with one in the nose' configuration. One day I may try to get to the bottom of that.

    UncleAlias - Ridiculous multi-engined flying boats, marvellouslly impractical.

    Nathan Madien/truth is life - Nail hit on head, almost. With a partial (state by state) repeal of prohibition there's no need to smuggle in from Mexico/Caribbean when you can go to the state next door. So Smuggling goes down and piracy falls off (most of the targets were fellow smugglers).

    When the Royal Navy starts proper patrols around the Caribbean and the 'squeeze' on Mob revenue hits I think the seas become safe as piracy stops being worth it. On land however......

    Atlantic Friend - I demand those aircraft, and their never-where predecessors, appear in Crossfires!

    And you are entirely correct on British naval-porn.

    Duritz - A well balanced, open minded review there. Apart from the open mind and balance of course.

    Le Jones - Against an un-distracted Commonwealth Japan would struggle, but don't expect them to recognise that. I think Japan's best hope is for that border-line traitor, fawning American puppet Curtin to win an election.

    Agamemnon_1781 - A not unrealistic aim certainly, I don't think Canberra would accept imported engines at this stage (too much loss of face if nothing else).

    Vann the Red - RAAF aircraft porn, possibly some RCAF action (not sure yet, Canadian industrial policy for aircraft was confused at best), maybe some light economic discussions on Imperial Preference.

    Then finally onto Amsterdam. Hopefully. Maybe.
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  7. #2227
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Pip View Post
    Atlantic Friend - Some fine aircraft there, though I confess to an irrational dislike of the 'three engines with one in the nose' configuration. One day I may try to get to the bottom of that.
    Being a complete non-technical ignoramus, I think the 3-engines as seen on Dewoitine 330+ series, Wibault 283, and the Junkers planes were the result of something like that :

    (number of passengers x distance to be covered) x security factor = number X of engines needed.

    With French planes, the 4-engine transport planes began for the extra-long postal hauls (the Bloch 160 and the Latécoère seaplanes). Then as the number of passengers increased, we got planes like the Bloch 161 and the Potez 660+ series.

    Atlantic Friend - I demand those aircraft, and their never-where predecessors, appear in Crossfires!
    Three of them already have, my dear sir. The military version of the Potez 620 carried Churchill to France, to meet Reynaud who flew the Dewoitine D338. As for the Bloch 220, it carried the French delegation to Münich.

  8. #2228
    Lt. General merrick's Avatar
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    I've been away from this too long - nice updates, Pippy!

    My advice for the various Commonwealth armed forces is to get the contracts for their new toys signed ASAP, before the "current equipment was good enough to win the last war - what do you need new equipment for?" and "War's over, threat is reduced - we can afford to cut defence spending!" arguments reappear. Particularly for the Canadians, who face no directs threats within a hemisphere of them, and whose attitude to the defence of the Empire probably runs heavily towards not sending another generation of Canadians to get slaughtered on the next incarnation of the Western Front (see also: ANZACs). Of course, focussing on air/sea/mechanised forces gives them an excuse not to field so many infantry divisions.

    The Australians, for their part, are going to have to decide whether Japan is a real threat and if so, what they plan to do about it.
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  9. #2229
    Flt. Sergeant, Fighter Command RAFspeak's Avatar
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    Play Up, England, Play Up!

    ...Good Show, we've only gone and won the Ashes!

    Although that young Aussie chap, Bradman wasn't it? ...seems like a man to watch for the future!

    Great game, great series - the best in sportsmanship, brought to you by the British Empire

    Now, where's that aircraft porn you were promising us, Pippy?

  10. #2230
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    merrick - Canada's attitude runs along the lines of 'We're fine, two giant oceans on both sides'. The failure of ASDIC has the RCN a little spooked though, perhaps subs are a menace, while the RCAF is looking longingly at the RAAF and thinking 'I wish we could send forces overseas'. So I think those two services get buffed first, being 'userful' while the best the Army can hope for is having old promises met, as you say a new CEF is not top of King's priorities.

    Australia, well you shall see in the next update.

    RAFspeak - It was indeed a spiffing result with a find display of sportsmanship on both sides, which is always nice (especially when you win ). However I must also blame the Ashes for distracting me from getting any writing done, a problem I hope to alleviate this week when I finish re-writing the RAAF updates in light of the new information on the Wirraway.
    The Butterfly Effect: A British AAR - "An an insane project of terrifying detail". The finest slower-than-real-time AAR on the board. Updated 11th September Through adversity, to the sea(plane).

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  11. #2231
    VC, MC and bar Duritz's Avatar
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    May I be the first to congratulate England on their fine victory. [sniff] Another fine series to go with 2005 and especially 2007-8.

    The Urn changing hands four series in a row hasn't happened since 1928-9, 1930, 1932-3, 1934. Bradman played in each of those series, the real loss for the Aussies was Archie Jackson. A man endeared on both sides of the contest. Read about his life and death here.

    England should take heart from the fact the Urn has never changed hands five series in a row... oh Lord, kill me now!!!

    Dury.
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  12. #2232
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Chapter LXXVII: Family Meeting Part V - The Best Laid Plans.


    The Australian government's pre-war plans had been for a specially formed private company, the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC), to construct licensed Australianised version of the next generation of aircraft and thus develop a modern domestic aircraft industry. With a bomber clearly beyond the existing industrial base, the industry mainly consisting of assembling imported kits, the government had despatched a technical team to trawl the world for a suitable trainer/general purpose aircraft while negotiations about the formation of CAC continued. The men of the technical mission were given the public brief to find a balance between ease of manufacture, performance, availability and design maturity. The demand for a proven monoplane design ruled out the available British options, which were either biplanes or still at the prototype stage at the time, so the search had therefore turned to Europe and America, eventually selecting the North American NA-16 as the most appropriate aircraft.

    That at least was the public version of events, in private the Australian government hoped to develop the new aircraft into a design for export, targeting the RAF trainer market and other Dominions looking for general purpose aircraft. While an ambitious plan with considerable economic and domestic logic behind it it had terminal political and military flaws. The military flaws were simple, while the NA-16 was a passable trainer, indeed after a major re-design and a new engine it would become the USAAC's fine T-6 Texan, it's anaemic Wright Whirlwind engine gave it decidedly poor performance, even for a general purpose aircraft. While the proposed fitting of the moderately more powerful Pratt & Whitney R-1340 engine the NA-16 would have helped somewhat, it would still have been slower than it's contemporaries, not least the Gloster Gladiator and the Hawker Hart/Fury biplanes. That however, was not the biggest problem, merely being a poor design does not disqualify an aircraft from government purchase as countless air forces will testify. The key problem was politics, quite simply trying to sell an Australian produced version of an American design to the Royal Air Force was never even slightly possible. With defence spending viewed as a zero-sum game (any Australian production was 'stolen' from a British factory), the Shadow Factories providing plenty of spare capacity and no shortage of excellent indigenous British trainers it is hardly surprising London was opposed to the scheme from the beginning.

    That this reaction came as a surprise to the Australian delegation to the conference is a testament to the optimism of those involved and their exceptionally rose-tinted view of the world. In a similar vein they were also shocked that their fellow Dominions had no intention of buying the decidedly ropey NA-16 and angering Britain just to help Australian aero industrialisation. These discoveries left the scheme in tatters, the cost (both political and financial) of the production line could not possibly be recovered from a mere 40 aircraft and continuing down an 'American' route undermined the government's aim of very public Imperial defence co-operation. That said too much had been politically invested to completely abandon aero industrialisation, it had become a key policy and to back down from it would have severely damaged the government's credibility. Fortunately for those involved, and the cause of Imperial defence, the aerial plans for the Far East would provide a route past the impasse.

    For the Far East the Air Staff identified four inter-connected roles the air force would need to carry out, three of them the moment war started and so requiring pre-positioned squadrons. The tasks were maritime reconnaissance, subsequent naval strikes on any ships found, ground support to remove any invaders that did land and fighter cover for the previous. While the removal of any landed invaders could be dealt with by reinforcements from Britain after the reinforcement fleet had arrived, the remaining tasks would form a key part of the delaying operations needed to buy time for the fleet to arrive. Indeed some in the Air Staff believed a strong enough RAF presence could stop the IJN dead through massed torpedo strikes, however such thinkers, despite showing the desired 'independent mission' mindset, were still in a very small minority on the Air Staff. The recommendations therefore were for a strong balanced force of reconnaissance aircraft, torpedo bombers and fighters capable of operation from both Hong Kong and Singapore. The main strength was to be concentrated on the Malay peninsula for space reasons, though the report also requested airfield expansion in the region to support a greater force once aerial reinforcements arrived. Somewhat controversially the report also asked for airfield construction on Borneo to be considered, the hope being to push back the perimeter around Singapore by providing forward bases for earlier spotting and striking any enemy naval force. All told the Air Staff wanted just over four hundred modern frontline aircraft in theatre as well as the countless training and support aircraft that went with such a deployment.


    The Short Singapore, a four engined push-pull flying boat that had been in gestation for almost five years prior to entering production. This extended development combined with an already conservative design had produced an aircraft that was considered obsolescent even before it entered production in 1935. As a biplane it had fallen victim to Minister for Air Churchill's cull, but not before several squadrons scattered from Gibraltar to Singapore had been equipped with it. The question of what to replace these aircraft with would occupy the Air Staff in the months following the Imperial Conference.


    Such a requirement was a vast increase over the current RAF Far East Command, which at the time consisted mainly of Vickers Vilderbeest biplane torpedo bombers and various flavours of flying boats for reconnaissance. Moreover while the majority of the new aircraft were to be bombers of some form or another the Air Staff also requested almost two hundred fighters, the first time they had proposed permanently deploying fighters outside the Metropolitan RAF. It was, however, the cost of the deployment not it's composition that exercised the politicians interest, the almost ten fold increase in aircraft numbers would mean an over ten fold increase in maintenance cost; modern multi-engine aircraft were more expensive to maintain than ancient biplanes. Then there was the little matter of procuring the new aircraft, training their crews and ground support and then deploying the new units to the Far East and building the new airfields, fuel dumps and defences. It should therefore come as no surprise that the government baulked at the cost and immediately began looking for ways to cut the cost, which brings us back to the Australian government.

    The Air Staff proposed the fighter contingent consist of Hawker Hurricane MkIIs with the 'hot climate' air filter and long range fuel tanks tested in North Africa. As has been previously discussed the Hurricane was a relatively basic design with somewhat 'old fashioned' construction methods, two factors the RAAF contingent had noted during the war. The Hurricane was therefore perfect for CAC as it was easy to 'tool up' for and well within Australian industrial capabilities, moreover having served over Malta and in North Africa it was a 'proven' design with all the features the government had requested. The problem was that Britain was far from keen in seeing Australia starting to manufacture it's own aircraft, particularly not brand new designs such as the Hurricane and it's cutting edge Merlin engine. The solution was a trade-off, Britain would drop her objections if Australia would base some of her newly built Hurricanes in Malaya. The upcoming Vickers Wellington, the RAF's latest attempt at a 'general purpose' bomber, was the final incentive needed to secure Canberra's agreement; offered for Australian production on the same terms as the Hurricane it would give Australia the modern twin engined bomber she had sought and save the RAF the expense of basing quite so many bombers in the Far East. The deal suited both parties, while Britain 'lost' the sales and had to concede Australia's right to some form of aero industry the Treasury felt the long term saving in defence expenditure more than out-weighed such concerns. Conversely the Australian government gained a foothold on the aero industry ladder, with the promise of British assistance for moving up to the higher rungs, at the cost of defence commitments for the RAAF.

    The twist in the tail would come from the other Dominions, Canada and New Zealand having noted the Australian's negotiations adjusted their own positions accordingly. New Zealand, who's own defence review under the seconded RAF officer Wing Commander Cochrane had recommended an expansion of the RNZAF, volunteered to contribute a squadron of Hurricanes to Malaya and, to the delight of Canberra, announced they intended to acquire the airframes from the new CAC factory. This surprise move was essentially a cost saving move by the New Zealand government, quite aside from the reduced shipping costs Wellington expected (and duly received) a significant discount as the first 'foreign' purchaser from CAC. The move did however confirm all the worse fears of many in Westminster and the British aviation industry and was used by the British Government to insist on a re-jigging of the make-up of CAC. The key change was forcing out General Motors-Holden and substituting in several large British defence firms. While some of these firms already had a presence in Australia (the vast Vickers-Armstrongs group owned the Cockatoo Island Docks & Engineering Company and de Havilland Australia had been established in the late 1920s) the main Hurricane firms, Hawker Siddeley and Rolls-Royce, did not and were duly 'encouraged' to set up Australian subsidiaries. These new firms, which in hindsight were the forerunners of the later Empire wide defence concerns, ensured British interests would remain well represented in CAC and were accepted in Australia as a price that had to be paid; overseas expertise would be required and it was though better to partner with British firms than be dependent on Americans such as GM.


    The North American Aviation's NA-16, the first 'might of been' of the Australian aero industry and certainly one of it's shadier corners. The selection was controversial at the time; the presence of General Motors-Holden as a founder member of CAC prompted many to comment on the suspicious coincidence of CAC picking a North American Aviation (NAA) design, NAA being owned by General Motors. These questions only intensified as the NAA 'experts' indicated a surprisingly large amount of work had to be done by GM-Holden using expatriate Americans or imported American equipment. The final nail in the coffin was GM-Holden's fierce resistance to changing over to the Hurricane, with the original export plan shot to pieces and a good deal from Britain on the table persisting with the NA-16 would clearly not have been a wise move for Australia. With their US connections already being unpopular with much of the public taking such a patently 'unpatriotic' line only made it easier for GM-Holden to be forced out of CAC and replaced with the new British firms.


    The Canadian position was somewhat more complicated, Canada already possessed an aero industry industry capable of licence building not only fighters and light aircraft but flying boats as well. The Canadian delegation was therefore less interested in industrial incentives to start an industry, preferring instead ways to migrate even further up the food chain towards larger aircraft and even domestic designs. As with the Antipodeans the Vickers Wellington was the design Canada had it's eye on, the long-range and general purpose nature of the design making it a good multi-role aircraft, an attractive option for an air force with few airframes. After the Australian precedent, and fearing the possibility of American firms increasing their presence in Canada, the British government felt it had little option but to agree. Taking as it's model the Australian CAC Britain did manage to ensure the Canadian version, Canadian Associated Aircraft (CAA), included Canadian Vickers and de Havilland Canada instead of the American based firms such as Fairchilds. While Prime Minister King was less than pleased with such conditions, a US firm would have furthered his hopes of stronger American-Canadian ties, he could not push too hard lest he drive Britain out completely, with potentially fatal electoral consequences. In the shorter term the RCAF Air Staff, worried about too much 'jam tomorrow' and not enough actual orders being placed, managed to secure purchases of both the Hawker Hurricane (from the British factories, much to London's relief) and the 'Arctic' version of the Handley Page Hamden as sold to Sweden. Finally the RCAF announced their desire to station a squadron of the new Hurricanes in Singapore until such time as the RAAF's new aircraft were available to replace them. This last move was the compromise between an Air Staff keen for an overseas deployment to gain experience and a government equally keen to avoid an expensive commitment in South East Asia. Limiting the presence until Australia was ready gave the RCAF time to pick up doctrines and procedures from a 'live' RAF station while re-assuring King it would only be a temporary and limited expense, the poll boost of 'Supporting Imperial Defence' also doubtless helping his decision. For Britain it filled a defence gap, allowed Whitehall to send less forces East (producing a not insignificant saving) and, amongst the more experienced hands, lit the hope that Canada would find it as hard to pull back from a defence commitment, even an explicitly temporary one, as everyone else did.

    Before leaving the Far East it is worth covering the 'Going forward' section of the aerial plan as it highlights the still considerable gap between the Air Staff and the Ministry of Defence Co-ordination. Both bodies started from the same problem, range, but then went in distinctly different directions. The root problem was the Far East was a far larger theatre than Europe; London to Berlin was barely 600 miles, while Singapore to Hong Kong was 1,600 miles and Singapore to Tokyo was 3,300 miles, only slightly less than the distance across the Atlantic from London to New York. Such distances were beyond even the proposed four engined heavies, let alone anything actually in RAF service. For the MoDC the solution was forward air bases, not just the Borneo scheme they pushed through but plans for capturing Japanese islands and getting basing rights in the Philippines. Conversely the RAF Air Staff, reluctant to rely on any other service for their operations, turned their attention to in-flight refuelling and the work of both the Royal Aircraft Establishment and Alan Cobham's Flight Refuelling Limited, the later having spent much of the summer of 1936 engaged in highly successful trials for Imperial Airways new Trans-Atlantic Short Empire mail service. Away from the Air Staff's focus on strategic bombing the two bodies were able to find more common ground, essentially agreeing on the need for a wholesale overhaul of almost the entire Coastal Command inventory. For the reconnaissance role the problems with the Avro Anson had been identified shortly after it entered service and the cancelling of the Supermarine Stranraer had left a gap for a large general-purpose (anti-submarine, convoy escort and reconnaissance) flying boats. The connected matter of land based torpedo bombers was complicated by the transfer of the Fleet Air Arm to Royal Navy control and the tendency of the Air Staff to tack on a torpedo capability to aircraft designed for strategic bombing. Given the difficulty of attacking a fully screened fleet the need for a dedicated RAF torpedo bomber, compared to a 'general purpose' bomber shoe-horned into the role, was recognised. Finally the need for a longer ranged fighter was noted, despite the additional external fuel tanks the Hurricane lacked the range required for the vast size of the theatre while the new Spitfire was even shorter legged.


    The Handley Page Hampden TB Mk I, the Coastal Command version of the Hampden equipped with a single Mk XII 18" torpedo carried in a fixed open bomb bay. Despite the performance hit from the open bomb bay, the poor accuracy caused by the somewhat improvised release mechanism and the general feeling that a four man crew was overly elaborate for a torpedo bomber the aircraft was warmly welcomed by both Coastal and Far East Command as a welcome change from the slow biplanes they were used to. For Bomber Command the move was less welcome, the bomber boys having assumed the entire run of Hampdens was for their use only. However even the most optimistic strategic advocate had to concede that heavy bombers would be very little use in defending Singapore or Hong Kong from naval attack, undermining any opposition before it began.


    In the short term there was little option but for the Anson, Short Singapore and Saro London to continue in the reconnaissance role along side the Fairey Swordfish and torpedo-equipped Hampden for anti-ship work. While the long term solution was new aircraft, something that prompted a flurry of operational requirements and Air Ministry specifications, the Air Staff felt the need for an interim solution through modifying current design and altering existing specifications. While many changes were focused on 'tropicalisation' for hot and humid operation there were a few key alterations worth mentioning. Beginning with the Vickers Wellington, the use of Merlin engines as an option was mandated a the request of the RAAF, as was being torpedo capable; the RAAF's smaller budget making mulit-role aircraft all but compulsory. As an interim fix to the reconnaissance problem a Bristol proposal for a long-ranged version of the new Blenheim bomber was accepted, while the Air Ministry resolved to finally decide the long drawn out saga of the R.2/33 flying boat specification and pick a winner for production. Turning to fighters the tenderers for F.37/35, the twin engined cannon fighter spec, were instructed to ensure the long range portion of the requirement was met, either in the main design or a submitted variant, as it was now non-negotiable. Almost as an after-thought a tender was put out for converting the fixed fuel tanks on the Hurricane to far safer 'drop tanks', no-one in the Air Force being happy about Hurricanes going into battle with fuel vapour filled and highly explosive containers still attached to them.

    The results of these changes, the details on the specifications and the beginning of the long running conflict over RAF/FAA torpedo bombers will be discussed later, for now it is time to leave the Far East and Imperial Defence and turn our attention to the Amsterdam Conference. After wrestling with the unknowns of Japan and the Orient there were many in the government and Foreign Office secretly looking forward to a return to the familiar stomping ground of Europe. The conference would remind these gentlemen that familiar was not the same as 'simple' or 'predictable'.

    --
    Notes.

    Short regular updates, what on earth are they? So we finally leave the Far East and the RAF has joined the 'If Japan's the enemy we'll give you ways to spend money' bandwagon. The CAC comes out as probably the best compromise, no-one gets what they wanted and everyone gets something. Ohh and it might have killed Holden cars post-war, but I'm sure that'll have no impact...

    The target of 400 aircraft for Far East Command is about the OTL request (varies between 3-500 depending on source), just the request brought forward considerably and slightly more integrated with the rest of the defence plan. Short term they'll only get some of what they want, but they will at least be modern aircraft. Will Canada be able to pull out it's commitment? Probably depends on the international situation at the time, if Japan is still quiet King can probably pull the RCAF out with little fuss when the ANZAF (Australia New Zealand Air Force) comes to replace them.

    Strange as it seems the RAF had indeed never based fighters outside Britain permanently till the mid 1930s, any deployments were temporary and only during wartime or international tensions. The fairly strong reasoning being there were never any hostile aircraft based nearby, or at least none the RAF was ever bothered about. TTL if everyone else is taking Japan seriously the RAF has to, if only to grab the money available from the Treasury, so Hurricanes and Hampdens head for Singapore. On which note Coastal Command is still trying to figure out what it wants; flying boats, GP bombers, pure recon or multi-role. But more on that later.

    Finally there's a great deal hanging on the Wellington to actually be a 'General Purpose' heavy bomber/long range recon/torpedo bomber/everything else aircraft. All roles it managed OTL so that should be OK, as would Merlin engines (I can't see CAC maintaing two engine production lines so they will want to re-use the line used for the Hurricane engines). The torpedo carrying Hampdens are pretty much OTL, Coastal Command had them several years later after Bomber Command was done with them (and forced to hand them over).

    Game effects;

    The existing TAC at Singapore gets upgraded and a new TAC and two INTs are sent out to join it. Australia gets three new IC in Melbourne for the CAC works and gets an INT added to her build queue. Canada gets an INT and a TAC in the queue and has just be given the blueprints for a few air doctrines as the RCAF squadron in Singapore 'learns lessons'.
    Last edited by El Pip; 30-09-2009 at 09:30.
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  13. #2233
    "Look behind you Mr Caesar !" Atlantic Friend's Avatar
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    Seaplanes!

    Short, Dornier and Latécoère sure had interesting machines back then.

    Being a complete ignoramus, I always considered the maritime patrol seaplanes had a longer "shelf life" than the other airframes, sheer performance being less important than with fighters and attack planes.

  14. #2234
    Wow, so much to chew on!

    Seems like win-win all around re: aircraft for the Dominions. Canada and Australia get to build modern licensed aircraft; UK firms get major shares in the new Dominion companies; Dominions commit defense resources to the Far East so Britain can save money and concentrate on defense infrastructure ie Singapore Naval Base & airfields in Malaya/Borneo. Nice touch the RNZAF "buying Australian."

    Even an understrength Eastern Fleet with a few hundered fighters and bombers to back it up should have the IJN thinking twice about any audacious moves south ...

    Wellington is a fine jack-of-all trades and so well suited for Dominion use.

    In-flight refueling, at this early date? Fascinating... but really possible?
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  15. #2235
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    I like how you have described various actions in your game through this negotiation. Excellent! Making the mundane act of giveing blue prints into something far more interesting.

    I have a sense that the Canadian Int's won't be seeing home anytime soon...
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  16. #2236
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    Ah, more aircraft information. Thanks, Pippy. Lovely post and I have to agree with the decision to trade monopolization of the manufacture for shared defense. Excellent game effects.

    Vann
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  17. #2237
    Lord of Slower-than-real-time El Pip's Avatar
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    Atlantic Friend - Indeed flying boats are for me one of the quintessential inter-war aircraft, I always think they should be full of late 1920s gents getting stylishly drunk.

    On shell life of seaplanes you are mostly correct, but Churchill is Air Minister. He's taken against all biplanes (not modern enough!) and will not let facts or reality deflect him. I couldn't have WSC be too rational or sensible, just wouldn't be right.

    DonnieBaseball - I was worried the industrial plan was a bit too neat, but unless people get ridiculously pig headed and wilfully act stupidly it was the most likely outcome.

    On the Japanese I still think they would be more worried about the US, China, looking north at the Soviet and indeed almost anyone else. It may hurt London's pride but Britain probably isn't the biggest IJN concern, I would imagine the USN still holds that crown.

    In flight refuelling was indeed entirely possible at that point, the Imperial Airways trials were entirely OTL. The Short Empire lacked trans-Atlantic range so had to be refuelled every crossing by a converted Handley Page Harrow. When they entered regular mail service in late 1936 Alan Cobham had developed a fully automated probe and drouge system complete with flow control and safety cut outs. However the RAF couldn't see the need so it faltered somewhat, especially as newer aircraft capable of crossing the Atlantic without refuelling became more prevalent. TTL, well who knows?

    Bafflegab - Glad you liked it! I think that's the one area I've really got better at these last few years, having the confidence to make more stuff up and being a lot less literal in conveying game events and actions.

    On the Canadian Hurricanes, I couldn't possibly comment!

    Vann the Red - I hoped you'd like some aircraft porn, I had to cut myself short at the end as I realised I was in danger of writing a few hundred more words on maritime patrol aircraft alone! Rest assured though, those words will appear later.

    Thanks for the kind words as well.
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  18. #2238
    Field Marshal Nathan Madien's Avatar

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    A very enjoyable read, El Pip.

    Quote Originally Posted by El Pip View Post
    Ohh and it might have killed Holden cars post-war, but I'm sure that'll have no impact...
    I have never heard of them.
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  19. #2239
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    Great update Pippy. I had always banked on 400 or so planes so the update fluffed my ego suitably!

    I think the CAC is a feasible plan (shock horror!). Certainly from the "Game Notes" bit it will all be useful stuff when/if the Jap onslaught begins.
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  20. #2240
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    Lovely update Pip old boy!

    No Holden... oh well, there goes our post war car culture. I hope no one liked Sir Jack Brabham! Or Mark Webber!

    Also you just gave a boost to public transport and put a crimp in Bob Menzies appeal at the 1949 general election... you might have just saved the Chifley Labor Government!

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